- How is kidney cancer treated?
- Surgery for kidney cancer
- Ablation and other local therapy for kidney cancer
- Active surveillance for kidney cancer
- Radiation therapy for kidney cancer
- Targeted therapies for kidney cancer
- Biologic therapy (immunotherapy) for kidney cancer
- Chemotherapy for kidney cancer
- Pain control for kidney cancer
- Clinical trials for kidney cancer
- Complementary and alternative therapies for kidney cancer
- Treatment choices by stage for kidney cancer
- More treatment information about kidney cancer
Pain control for kidney cancer
Pain is a concern for some patients with advanced kidney cancer. It is important to let your doctor know about any pain you might have so that it can be treated. Unless your doctor knows about your pain, they can’t help you.
There are many different forms of pain medicine, ranging from over-the-counter pain relievers to stronger drugs like morphine or other opioids. For treatment to be effective, the pain medicines need to be taken on a regular schedule, not just when the pain becomes severe. Several long-acting forms of morphine and other long-acting opioid drugs need only to be taken once or twice a day.
In some cases, palliative surgery or radiation therapy can help relieve pain caused by cancer spreading to certain areas. For example, drugs called bisphosphonates may be helpful in people whose cancers have spread to their bones. Sometimes pain specialists can do certain procedures such as a nerve block to lessen pain, depending on where the pain is.
To learn more about the options for managing cancer pain, see the “Cancer-Related Pain” section of our website, or our document Pain Control: A Guide for those With Cancer and Their Loved Ones.
Last Medical Review: 02/24/2014
Last Revised: 02/24/2014